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Abstract

This essay will introduce and analyze the idea of circular consciousness as the product of the constant negotiations involved in the lived experience of intersectionality. Circular consciousness is the understanding that subject positionings are in constant motion, sliding over, under, and around each other, consequently informing and redefining identities. The essay pulls from intersectional theory and feminist postcolonial theory, speaks to queer theory, and calls for increased and continued elasticity in our understandings and theorizing around power, subjectivity, agency, and identity. Advocating for a renewed dedication to the political origins of intersectional theory, this article will focus on LGBQ Nigerian-born women currently living in the USA. Blackness and nationality, as well as Nigerian-ness and the ‘coming out’ are the themes used to emphasise the tensions, contradictions, and spaces for agency in the daily experience of multiple identities.

Note on the Author

Meremu Chikwendu is a Ph.D. candidate in Gender Studies at University of Leeds.

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